Coachella Valley Housing Coalition (CVHC) seeks a dynamic and strategic Executive Director committed to advancing CVHC’s work to provide safe, affordable housing and community programs to thousands of people throughout Southern California in San Bernardino, Riverside and Imperial Counties.
Coachella Valley Housing Coalition (CVHC) was founded in 1982 with $10,000 by a group of visionaries seeking to build housing for farm workers in the area. Since then, the organization has grown to provide housing not only to farm workers, but also to seniors, veterans, and thousands of low- and very low-income families and individuals. CVHC lives out its mission to “improve the living conditions of low-income individuals and families by constructing and operating affordable housing infused with programs and opportunities that enrich, build, and grow their lives.” Through its comprehensive programs and services, CVHC has leveraged millions of dollars of private and public investments in the communities it serves, and has improved the quality of life of residents throughout its service area.
Housing: Homeownership and Rental Housing
CVHC has built more than 4,000 multi- and single-family residences, creating more than 2,100 new homeowners and making CVHC the largest developer of low-income housing in Riverside County, and one of the largest residential developers of any kind in the Coachella Valley.
In its single-family housing division, CVHC serves low-income families who have a strong motivation to become homeowners but are unable to purchase housing at market price. Through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Mutual Self-Help Housing program, CVHC assists families with forming an informal association where they agree to help each other build their houses, with assistance from professionals and volunteers.
Through its rental housing division, CVHC helps families and individuals looking for stable and decent housing and individuals with special needs who are not accommodated by the private market. Through its multi-family development department, CVHC has developed and owns 38 complexes, totaling more than 2,800 homes. The organization is known for its high-quality design and construction models and has won multiple awards for its rental complexes.
Recently, various communities have opened discussion on the potential for more affordable housing developments including local cities such as Palm Springs, Imperial, Indio and Palm Desert.
Community Programs and Engagement
CVHC offers an extensive set of programs primarily focused on education, including after-school tutoring, computer literacy programs and adult education. Its John Mealey Scholarship Fund, founded in 2002, has awarded scholarships totaling $600,000 to 700 resident students working to obtain associates, bachelors, and masters/professional degrees. In partnership with the County of Riverside, local unified school districts and other nonprofits, CVHC has developed diverse, comprehensive community service programs that help residents enhance their lives and access opportunities. CVHC has also created 10 after-school kids clubs, eight child development centers, 19 computer technology centers and other educational and recreational programs designed to serve the needs of residents of all ages.
CVHC is committed to assisting families become active participants in the community by providing a range of activities and programs, including mariachi band classes, ballet folklórico classes, summer camps, and community gardens. CVHC offers an online homebuyer education course as well as a credit counseling program to help individuals obtain the tools and knowledge to learn about the home buying process and prepare for home ownership.
- CVHC is proud to serve a diversity of tenant groups including seniors, veterans, families with special needs, farm workers, and large families.
- In 2017, CHVC funded and completed three different building projects - Villa Hermosa Apartments, Phase II (Indio, CA), Paseo de los Heroes III (Mecca, CA) Washington Street Apartments (La Quinta, CA).
- CVHC is actively engaged in discussions with community partners and nonprofits such as hospitals, health clinics, churches, and food banks as well as local government around new development opportunities.
- CVHC partnered with U.S. Vets, a national nonprofit that helps at-risk veterans and also with Desert AIDS Project, a nonprofit committed to enhancing and promoting the health and well-being of the Coachella Valley community; CVHC has engaged in strategic conversations with other service providers, such as local healthcare providers who are eager to provide transitional housing for recently discharged patients.
- CVHC continues to be actively invested in its internal staff development and has increased its focus on training and career development.
Governed by a 15-member board, CVHC serves its community with a staff of 47 and an operating budget of $11M. CVHC is a chartered member of NeighborWorks America® with exemplary status. CVHC receives funding from a variety of sources, including state and federal funding, NeighborWorks® America, LISC (Local Initiatives Support Corporation), foundations and corporate and individual donors.
For more information, please visit http://www.cvhc.org/.
About the Coachella Valley
The Coachella Valley is a beautiful desert valley bounded on the west by the San Jacinto and Santa Rosa Mountains and on the north and east by the Little San Bernardino Mountains. With more than 350 days of sunshine every year, the valley offers a wide range of recreational activities from hiking and horseback riding in the surrounding canyons to golf courses and spas with natural mineral water wells. The valley is also a hotbed of cultural events, with an annual international film festival, theatre and local museums. The region attracts music goers to the popular Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, and sport enthusiasts to the BNP Paribas Open tennis tournament. There is a large LGBTQ community and a diverse population locally. The region is home to agriculture, tourism and a freight and goods transportation industry and is served by the Palm Springs International Airport.
The Executive Director must bring a passion for affordable housing and community development and be interested in advocating on behalf of low-income communities’ needs at the local, state and federal levels. In addition to running the day-to-day operations and ensuring the organization’s financial viability, the Executive Director will continue to build out programs and services, joining an organization that places a high value on quality housing development and management, and caring for its own residents. The incoming Executive Director will succeed Julie Bornstein, a previous board member, who became the Executive Director in 2016 following founding director John Mealey.
Leadership Outlook and Near-Term Priorities
The Executive Director will advance the near-term strategic priorities identified by the Board and staff, which include:
Organizational Sustainability and Growth
- Maintaining CVHC’s overall organizational health and financial strength.
- Infusing innovation into CVHC’s business model in a way that reflects the evolving needs of the community, investigating new lines of business and/or geographic areas served.
- Continuing plans for the development of a larger building to serve as the CVHC headquarters.
Programs and Services
- Building an innovative real estate development pipeline, including single-family and multi-family developments.
- Expanding CVHC’s resident services, such as civic engagement, health/nutrition and financial literacy, in multi-family developments.
- Launching the Urban Self-Help Homeownership Program.
Fundraising, Advocacy and Partnerships
- Creating a fundraising plan and endowment for CVHC to sustain resident services programs and other programs and services.
- Forging deeper relationships with local, regional, and state policymakers.
- Leading public policy and advocating for affordable housing opportunities.
Management and Leadership
- Working closely with the Board and staff to ensure a smooth leadership transition.
- Investing in staff development and increasing capacity and staff size; ensuring leadership succession plans are in place for all senior staff.
- Enhancing the diversity on staff and the Board to better reflect the community served.
The Executive Director will enhance CVHC’s regional and national profile while striving to innovate its business model and explore ways to increase CVHC’s reach within the Coachella Valley and beyond. Reporting to the Board of Directors and directly managing a five-person senior staff, the Executive Director will provide leadership to the organization and manage its day-to-day affairs. Primary responsibilities include:
- Maintaining focus on the mission to provide affordable housing in the region.
- Overseeing and enhancing day-to-day-operations.
- Overseeing all financial systems and ensuring fiscal accountability and integrity.
- Creating and implementing a sustainable business model to meet current and future needs of the community.
- Exploring new development opportunities, leveraging recent changes in state affordable housing legislation to secure sites and development rights throughout CVHC’s service area.
- Raising funds to finance housing projects, land development and other programs and resident services, including resources for a new headquarters building.
- Expanding CVHC’s political presence and its visibility to the general public.
- Deepening and expanding relationships with strategic community partners, lenders, investors and funders.
- Increasing staff size while maintaining a high degree of employee satisfaction and productivity.
- Collaborating with the Board of Directors and fully utilizing Board member strengths in an active committee structure.
Skills and Attributes
The ideal candidate will bring a variety of experiences, characteristics and attributes to CVHC, including:
Skills and Experience
- 10-15 years of senior-level experience in housing, community development, or economic development; experience leading diverse teams.
- Deep understanding of the legal, political and financial aspects of affordable housing.
- Familiarity with the S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Mutual Self-Help Housing program and low-income housing tax credit program.
- Political savviness; experience and demonstrated ability to work effectively with local, regional, state, and federal government.
- Strong business acumen and a high level of financial proficiency; an understanding of financial modeling for community development organizations is preferred.
- Experience in the affordable home building industry and knowledge about 501(c)(3) policies.
- Track record of obtaining funding from a variety of sources such as individual donors, foundations, state and federal government and business.
- Excellent written and verbal communication with individuals and groups; public speaking experience.
- Strong management and administrative skills.
- Past successful experience working with a Board of Directors is preferred.
- Familiarity with low-income communities and Spanish-speaking skills are desirable.
Qualities and Attributes
- A passion for CVHC’s work and its mission.
- Demonstrated commitment to housing and economic security efforts.
- A strong racial equity lens with a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion; an understanding of the needs and desires of low-income families, especially farmworkers, and cultural sensitivity to immigrant populations.
- An inclusive mindset and sensitive to the needs of the LGBTQ community.
- Servant and respectful leadership style; compassionate and accepting of input from others.
CVHC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
About Raffa – Marcum’s Nonprofit & Social Sector Group
On behalf of Coachella Valley Housing Coalition, Raffa – Marcum’s Nonprofit & Social Sector Group is working with the Board of Directors to advance the search. Founded in 1984 and recently merged with Marcum, Raffa is, and always has been, a mission-driven professional services firm seeking to do more for nonprofits and socially conscious companies like CVHC. Learn more about our work at http://marcumllp.com/industries/nonprofit-social-sector.